Light Rant!

Okay so having got my rain rant off my chest, I have only one more rant to go before we return to our usual pictures of bike joy.   Lights on bikes... you need them.  I honestly think people forget the importance of lights on your bicycle.  They are not there just to shine your way home but so other people can SEE you.  

Now by law we are required to have front and back lights.  Fine. Done. But do you really think its enough?  What about the sides of your bike?  Who can see you as you come through a roundabout?  What about the idea that your lights might not be enough for cars to realise you are just a wee bicycle rider?  Sure high vis is a good idea but if you have the right lights on your bike then you will be able to be seen even if you left your high vis at home.  I see so many riders out with only the tiniest of lights front and back and in rainy weather, behind a windscreen this is just not enough!

Now I am going to let you in on a little secret... Ebay. Seriously there is such a huge selection of lights on here and if you are worried about your lights getting pinched (as happens often in Sydney) then you won't mind as much if you buy your lights from here because they are so affordable.

First pick a very bright, flashy rear light or two!  For front lights its important not to have your light up too high, it should be pointed at the ground a metre or two ahead of your bike.  Passing people whose lights are up too high on a narrow shared bike path can be a blinding experience!  Its a good idea to have a back ups in your bag for less visible evenings or in case of batteries going flat.

Ebay here

Wheel lights.. The best invention.  They go round and round as your wheels go round and round.  They scream "I am a bicycle" and as a bonus they are very pretty too!  You can get ones that attach to your tire valves or onto the spokes themselves. And they are so cheap!

From personal experience, I find this one easy and highly effective.

Ebay here

But there a lots of fun ones to choose from so I included a few more ideas...

Ebay here

Ebay here

Ebay here

Another great idea is lights that wrap around your frame.  These are less likely to be stolen as its a pain for the thieves to unwind them and they are more likely to get caught (I know this as my lights were recently pinched but they didn't take the bike glow).  They come in different colours and are very effective.

Available here

Now you can add high vis to this, it doesn't hurt.  I don't think high vis by itself is enough, it is not as bright as lights.  But think of it all this way, with a few extra lights no driver can ever get away with "But I just didn't see the cyclist" excuse ever again!  

Looking forward to 'seeing' you all soon!


kerry said...

thanks some good ideas

Anonymous said...

I lurve this!! Thanks for the great tips - gettin onto ebay right away! Could you please post something about reflective materials / threads....we need to get the bike crochet happening. Cheers! chem

Unknown said...

Thanks for the great tips

Headhunter Montreal

Pippa said...

Thanks for the awesome eBay links, I'm definitely lighting up. I also want to ask what's the deal with front lights- I always thought the rules and logic dictated it be a steady light but I see a lot of "flasher" around. You've spoken about blinding people and I gotta say I'm not a fan of the Blinder range of bike lights. I always seem to get stuck just behind someone with one flashing thus blinding their fellow cyclist.

Niamh G said...


second: just bought some of those wheel lights, groovy with a capital G, thankyou for the great post, I cannot wait to get mine!!!

Preston said...


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